By Mark Zuckerman The Washington TimesSitting in front of a bank of cameras and microphones and donning his new Washington Nationals cap and No. 7 jersey, Ivan Rodriguez made it clear Friday that he didn’t come to the District to take up space on the bench and serve as some kind of figurehead clubhouse presence.“I’m ready to play every day,” the 38-year-old catcher said. “We discussed that. I’m a player that I still can play every day, and I will play every day. I know that it’s hard for me to play 162 games. That’s impossible for a catcher. But as long as I’m healthy and I’m feeling great physically, I’ll be in the field playing.”Whether the Nationals actually provide Rodriguez with that kind of playing time the next two seasons — especially with 25-year-old Jesus Flores semi-entrenched as the starting backstop — remains to be seen. Either way, general manager Mike Rizzo had no trouble with Pudge’s recurring message during his introductory news conference at Nationals Park.“Would you expect anything different?” Rizzo said. “He’s a 14-time All-Star. He’s a very prideful guy. And he thinks his skills are at their finest. He might be right. You never know. …… Read full this story
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